Hiring Excellence Mythbusters - OPM. the applicants are assessed and the referral list is issued,...

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Transcript of Hiring Excellence Mythbusters - OPM. the applicants are assessed and the referral list is issued,...

  • Module 3.0



  • 2


  • Myth #1: Hiring managers should refrain from getting too involved in their hiring actions to avoid any appearance of impropriety in the hiring process.

    Fact: There are many ways that hiring managers can and should be involved in the hiring process to help ensure a great outcome. This includes working closely with HR before the job opportunity announcement (JOA) is even posted to: ensure the position description is accurate and up-to-date; complete a job analysis to identify the critical competencies needed in the job; participate in identifying/developing the assessment tool (e.g., structured

    interviews, writing samples, tests) that will be used to evaluate candidates; develop a recruiting strategy; and ensure that the JOA accurately describes the duties of the job and

    competencies and experience required in an easy-to-understand and appealing manner.

    After the applicants are assessed and the referral list is issued, the hiring manager should actively engage in interviewing top candidates and making the selection.


    Hiring Mythbuster


  • Myth #2: I am using a standard Position Description (PD) and I am not allowed to include specialized skills in my Job Opportunity Announcement (JOA).

    Fact: You can include specialized skills in your JOA. Position descriptions outline the major duties and other factors necessary to determine the occupational series and grade level of a position in accordance with OPM classification standards. Its the job analysis, however, that identifies the critical competencies and defines the specialized experience and any special skills needed to perform the work of the position. HR and the hiring manager should collaborate to conduct the job analysis, and use the results to develop the requirements in the JOA.

    Example: HR in Agency A has classified a standard PD for Budget Analyst, GS-5019/14 and has recently updated the job analysis. When a hiring manager seeks to fill this position; using the updated job analysis, HR works with the hiring manager to determine the specialized experience needed for the job at the required grade level and defines it in the JOA.


    Hiring Mythbuster

  • Myth #3: Hiring managers are not allowed to engage in active, strategic recruitment for their open positions.

    Fact: Managers are permitted and encouraged to actively recruit for their open positions. Public notice, or simply posting a job announcement, is not a substitute for more focused recruiting. Strategic recruitment focuses your resources in areas most likely to yield results and does NOT violate Merit System Principles.

    Fact: You can invite individuals to apply for job openings.

    Fact: When using competitive examining, as a hiring manager, you may notify HR when you have identified a specific candidate through active recruiting. This is called a named request. (note: Veterans preference still applies.)

    Example: At a college job fair focused on computer science jobs, you provide a job opportunity announcement for an open position to interested candidates, inviting them to apply for the position upon graduation.


    Hiring Mythbuster

  • Myth #4: Referral lists (certificates) cannot be shared within an agency. Fact: In most agencies, HR can share certificates of qualified applicants with other managers in their agency when filling similar jobs. [TIP: JOAs should include language that gives candidates an opportunity to opt out of the sharing of their application for other positions.]

    For example, add a statement near the end of the JOA to notify the applicants that applying to the JOA certifies that the applicants give permission for the agency to share their applications with others in their agency for other similar positions. Also, add a check-box that applicants can check to authorize the sharing of their applications for other similar positions within the agency. Consult with your HR Office for more information.


    Hiring Mythbuster

  • Myth #5: When using a Direct Hire Authority (DHA), an agency does not have to post a job announcement on USAJOBS.

    Fact: When using DHA agencies still must, at a minimum, post a job announcement on USAJOBS prior to filling a job. DHA waives veterans preference and the rating and ranking process it does not waive public notice requirements.


    Hiring Mythbuster

  • Myth #6: When making any appointment under Schedule A of the excepted service, veterans preference is applied as far as administratively feasible (i.e., apply preference if it makes sense to do so).

    Fact: Veterans preference must be applied fully when making Schedule A appointments, in accordance with the provisions of 5 CFR part 302. Veterans preference applies as administratively feasible (i.e., using a methodology not prescribed in 5 CFR 302) only for certain positions filled under Schedule A (e.g., attorney positions), or when OPM and an agency with a specific Schedule A hiring authority agree (through written agreement).


    Hiring Mythbuster

  • 9


  • Myth #1: Rating and ranking applicants can only be done by qualified HR staff. Fact: It is entirely appropriate (and encouraged!) to use Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) outside of HR to rate and rank applicants and determine the most highly qualified candidates for a position. The use of SMEs can be particularly helpful when evaluating candidates for highly technical or uncommon positions. A Subject Matter Expert often has experience, technical insights and understanding about a job that can help HR specialists more effectively assess an applicants qualifications and experience. Note that hiring managers shouldnt serve as SMEs to rate and rank candidates for jobs within their organization (to preserve objectivity in the process), the decision to use SMEs and how they will be used must be made before the announcement is opened, as part of the assessment development stage for the announcement, and SME reviews should be coordinated and overseen by the HR specialist to ensure that agency procedural and policy requirements are met.


    Assessment Mythbuster

  • Examples for Hiring Myth #1:

    Agency A has established a standard operating procedure for technical and professional positions in order to maintain trust between HR and hiring managers as well as to ensure the highest quality applicants are referred. HR requires the hiring manager to designate an SME(s) to help with rating and ranking all applicants.

    Agency B has identified a financial analyst vacancy in the Office of the Chief Financial Officer (CFO). The CFO has designated a senior financial analyst to serve as an SME. The SME provides critical information to the HR Specialist developing the job analysis including critical tasks and the competencies needed to successfully perform the tasks. With this information, the HR Specialist builds the occupational questionnaire that will be used to rate and rank candidates.


    Assessment Mythbuster

  • Myth #2: A Subject Matter Expert (SME) may not review applications until after an HR Specialist has performed a minimum qualifications review. Fact: An SME may work with the HR Specialist during the minimum qualifications review, so long as the HR Specialist has the final authority and responsibility for signing off on the minimum qualifications determination. This is especially helpful when the position is highly technical. SMEs may advise the HR Specialist, and to make recommendations. However, agencies must ensure that HR Specialists remain empowered to make the final minimum qualifications determination without fear of undue influence by SMEs.


    Assessment Mythbuster

  • Myth #3: After Knowledge, Skill and Ability (KSA) essays were eliminated in 2010, it became really difficult to accurately assess an applicants qualifications during the initial application process.

    Fact: While its true that agencies may not request KSA narratives as part of the initial application process, writing samples or other written accomplishment records can be required later in the process after an applicant applies for a position. In addition to written essays/narratives, there are a variety of other ways agencies can assess an applicants qualifications.

    Example: Agency A worked with HR to implement a process where applicants were required to provide a writing sample answering a question related to the position in addition to a structured interview process with Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). Based on that process, the SMEs and HR staff determined who was qualified for the position.


    Assessment Mythbuster

  • Myth #4: Agencies are required to use the OPM-developed rating schedules or written exam for Administrative Careers With America (ACWA) positions.

    Fact: OPM released a memo on March 6, 2009 specifying that

    agencies are not required to use ACWA and may use an alternative assessment tool provided it is validated (i.e., job-related), complies with the Delegated Examining Operations Handbook (DEOH) and uniform guidelines.

    Agencies are permitted to develop or procure a custom assessment for ACWA positions.


    Assessment Mythbuster

  • Myth #5: The only way to rank large numbers of eligible applicants quickly and efficiently is with a self-report occupational questionnaire (OQ).

    Fact: Although OQs are widely used due to the relative ease with which they can be developed, admin